Executive Intelligence Review
This article appears in the September 6, 2013 issue of Executive Intelligence Review.
IMPEACHMENT NEXT?

Congress Must Reject Push
for Launch Toward World War

by Nancy Spannaus

[PDF version of this article]

Sept. 3—No one should take British tool Barack Obama's concession to go for a vote in Congress before launching war against Syria, as a sign the Administration has backed off for one minute from its determination to go to war. Obama's controllers are determined to proceed with the gameplan put into effect after the murder of Libya's Qaddafi—pressing a policy of one-world dictatorship that is ultimately aimed at nuclear powers Russia and China, and leads directly toward World War III. Already, Congress is being subjected to an intense bullying campaign from the Administration, to accept its so-called evidence of the Assad government's use of chemical weapons, and to agree that unprovoked military action is the "only" appropriate response to take.

If Congress submits to this pressure, and passes the authorization for a strike (even if modified), it will make itself complicit with this Administration in committing crimes for which the Nazis were condemned at Nuremberg—and treason against these United States.

Even if the chemical weapons charges were true—which all reason and available evidence indicates they are not—the United States would not be justified in taking military action against Syria. Such action is illegal under international law, which gives only the UN Security Council the right to authorize such action, unless the action is taken in self-defense. In reality, such action would amount to the repeat of the 2003 assault on Iraq, the launching of an unprovoked aggressive war like that waged by Adolf Hitler.

At the same time, a U.S. attack on Syria would violate the U.S. Constitution in at least two ways.

  • First, it would amount to an undeclared war against a nation which poses no threat to the United States.

  • Second, it actually would commit the U.S. Armed Forces to a military alliance with enemies of the United States, such as al-Qaeda, which is the predominant military opposition to the Assad government.

Congress must therefore reject Obama's Authorization of Use of Military Force (even if modified), and, because this President cannot be trusted to obey the law, Congress must institute impeachment proceedings which are already more than fully justified by law. If Obama goes ahead with military force after a Congressional rejection, that simply adds another count for impeachment, as Rep. Walter Jones' HCR 3 points out. The fate of civilization itself lies in Congress's hands.

Intent on World War III

The Authorization for the Use of Military Force (AUMF) submitted by the Obama Administration on Aug. 31 makes clear that the Administration is pressing for Congress to give the President the right to act unilaterally for regime change. The AUMF authorizes the President to use the Armed Forces of the United States "as he determines to be necessary and appropriate in connection with the use of chemical weapons or other weapons of mass destruction in the conflict in Syria" for the purpose of preventing or deterring the use or proliferation of WMD, to or from Syria, and to protect the U.S. and its allies and partners against the threat posed by such weapons.

Qualified legal analysts, such as Jack Goldsmith, who headed the Office of Legal Counsel in 2003-04 during the Bush-Cheney Administration, immediately identified Obama's AUMF as a completely open-ended authorization for an attack on any number of countries which the President might determine to be aiding in the use of WMD in the Syrian civil war.

In the Lawfare blog Sept. 2, Goldsmith wrote:

"There is much more here than at first meets the eye. The proposed AUMF focuses on Syrian WMD but is otherwise very broad. It authorizes the President to use any element of the U.S. Armed Forces and any method of force. It does not contain specific limits on targets—either in terms of the identity of the targets (e.g., the Syrian government, Syrian rebels, Hezbollah, Iran) or the geography of the targets. Its main limit comes on the purposes for which force can be used. Four points are worth making about these purposes.

"First, the proposed AUMF authorizes the President to use force 'in connection with' the use of WMD in the Syrian civil war. (It does not limit the President's use force to the territory of Syria, but rather says that the use of force must have a connection to the use of WMD in the Syrian conflict. Activities outside Syria can and certainly do have a connection to the use of WMD in the Syrian civil war.)

"Second, the use of force must be designed to 'prevent or deter the use or proliferation' of WMDs 'within, to or from Syria' or (broader yet) to 'protect the United States and its allies and partners against the threat posed by such weapons.'

"Third, the proposed AUMF gives the President final interpretive authority to determine when these criteria are satisfied ('as he determines to be necessary and appropriate').

"Fourth, the proposed AUMF contemplates no procedural restrictions on the President's powers (such as a time limit)."

While Congress immediately picked up on two of the glaring loopholes in this resolution, and demanded both a time limit and an explicit prohibition for "boots on the ground," such alleged limitations are cosmetic, at best. Indeed, the fact that the Administration's AUMF is aimed at Iran has been openly proclaimed by all proponents of the military action, despite the obvious consequences for a war confrontation that augurs a fast track to World War III.

Chemical Weapons Lies

In Great Britain, the memory of Tony Blair's great "WMD" hoax of 2003, which lie was used to justify the illegal and devastating war against Iraq, beginning that year, played a decisive role in Parliament's defeat of Cameron's resolution for war authorization Aug. 29. In the U.S., memories appear to be much shorter.

Evidence continues to pile up that the charge of Assad's use of chemical weapons against civilians in the Damascus suburb of Ghouta Aug. 21 is totally circumstantial and inconclusive (see articles in International). The alleged intercept evidence, of supposed communications between the local commander and Syrian Army headquarters, has been reported by some sources (such as neoconservative writer Kenneth Timmerman) as having been doctored to show the opposite of reality, and by others (e.g., retired senior British diplomat Craig Murray) as having been faked altogether.

Reliance on YouTube and Internet "sources" has the same quality of virtual reality, since it could have come from anywhere.

Equally suspicious is the fact that the Obama Administration has steadfastly attempted to sabotage the mission of the UN Inspection Team which visited Ghouta, and has declared it will not wait for the results of their analysis. Why?

The reality is that the Administration is determined to use the chemical weapons charge as an excuse, knowing it is not true—or at least cannot be proven.

'A Crime Against Peace'

Should Congress approve Obama's war resolution, it will be complicit in the Administration's commission of a "crime against peace," an offense defined by the International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg, for which 12 Nazi defendants were convicted, and 7 sentenced to death.

According to the Charter of the International Military Tribunal, "crimes against peace" are defined as "planning, preparation, initiation or waging of a war of aggression, or a war in violation of international treaties, agreements or assurances, or participation in a common plan or conspiracy for the accomplishment of any of the foregoing."

The Bush Administration, and Tony Blair, committed precisely such a crime in its war against Iraq in 2003, and the Obama Administration committed a similar crime, along with its European allies, in its war against Libya in 2011. Now Obama—in line with the British Empire's global strategy—proposes to do it again in Syria, with the clear intent for a wider war.

The principles of law declared in the Nuremberg Charter are binding on the United States, not only as a matter of natural law, but a matter of positive law expressed by treaty and agreement among sovereign nations. This has been repeatedly attested to by U.S. official representatives.

But we don't have to go all the way back to 1945-46, to define the crime at issue. In December of 1974, the United Nations General Assembly updated the definition of aggressive war. Article 3 of that definition is most relevant here:

"Article 3: Any of the following acts, regardless of a declaration of war, shall, subject to and in accordance with the provision of Article 2 [which provides an exception in the case of an explicit UN Security Council authorization—ed.], qualify as an act of aggression:

  1. The invasion or attack by the armed forces of a State or the territory of another state, or any military occupation; ...

  2. Bombardment by the armed forces of a State against the territory of another States; ...

  3. The blockade of the ports of the coasts of a State by the armed forces of another State; ...

  4. The sending by or on behalf of a State of armed bands, groups, irregulars or mercenaries, which carry out acts of armed force against another State of such gravity as to amount to the acts listed above, or its substantial involvement therein."

This argument against the U.S.-British war against Iraq has been raised consistently by pro-peace forces, and is now being raised again in light of the Obama Administration's intention for the strike on Syria, for very good reason.

'Al-Qaeda's Airforce'

Any authorization of Obama's AUMF would also violate the U.S. Constitution, and conform to the definition of treason. Specifically, military action in support of the rebel forces fighting the Assad government in Syria would amount to "adhering to [our] enemies, giving them aid and comfort."

There is no question, even within the Obama Administration, that the radical jihadist forces armed and funded by Saudi Arabia and Qatar, among others, are the most powerful forces within the armed opposition in Syria, and that they will be major beneficiaries of any U.S. military action in that country. Some military leaders, such as Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Martin Dempsey, have put it mildly, by saying that there is no assurance that a victory for the opposition would result in stability for Syria or the region, or a positive outcome for the United States.

As General Dempsey put it in a letter to pro-war Member of Congress:

"In a variety of ways, the use of U.S. military force can change the military balance, but it cannot resolve the underlying and historic ethnic, religious and tribal issues that are fueling the conflict."

Dempsey continued:

"Syria today is not about choosing between sides but rather about choosing one among many sides. t is my belief that the side we choose must be ready to promote their interests and ours when the balance shifts in their favor. Today, they are not. The crisis in Syria is tragic and complex. It is a deeply rooted, long-term conflict among multiple factions, and violent struggles for power will continue after Assad's rule ends. We should evaluate the effectiveness of limited military options in this context" (emphasis added).

Others have been more polemical. For example, former Rep. Dennis Kucinich, who has been outspoken in attacking the drive toward war, and asked in an interview with The Hill Aug. 31 if the U.S. really wants to become "al-Qaeda's airforce," because that is what, in fact, it would become, if it were to intervene militarily against Assad. Other politicians, such as Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas, obviously with the example of Libya in mind, have picked up the slogan.

Perhaps equally important, trenchant opposition is also coming from the lower ranks of the military. For example: A Facebook posting, reportedly from a U.S. Naval Chief Petty Officer, for a conservative talk show's page, had more than 5,000 shares yesterday, even though it had only been online for four hours. Talk show host Angel Clark wrote: "I was sent this by someone who wanted to remain anonymous. There are huge repercussions for making a political statement in uniform, but they needed to say this. 'I DIDN'T JOIN THE NAVY TO FIGHT FOR AL QAEDA IN A SYRIAN CIVIL WAR!' "

Why would any patriot of the United States support military intervention in favor of strengthening al-Qaeda?

It is for precisely this reason that sane military heads, such as General Dempsey, have resisted the push toward war that the British Empire has been making since the Fall of 2011. They know there is no positive strategic outcome possible from supporting a barbaric force which is carrying out pogroms—and worse—against Christians and Shi'ites throughout Southwest Asia.

Rather than support Obama's intention to carry out this treason, Congress should move to impeach him instead.

The Case for Impeachment

In a statement released to EIR Sept. 2, international law expert Prof. Francis Boyle said:

"I think we have to play jujitsu with Obama. He wants Congress to vote for war on September 9. Instead of playing his game, we should call for Congress to impeach him on September 9—immediately, which they can do. That will send a shot across his bow now."

Boyle, along with former Reagan Administration Justice Department official Bruce Fein, has already drafted articles of impeachment against Obama—as they both did against President Bush as well. The primary counts they identify are two: First, the unconstitutional prosecution of war against Libya, with authorization of the U.S. Congress; and second, the killing of American citizens, such as Anwar al-Awlaki, without due process of law.

Additional charges of impeachable offenses have been raised, particularly in light of the events in Benghazi 2012, when it appears that the Obama Administration's alliance with al-Qaeda associates, in pursuit of, among other things, arming jihadists in Syria, led to the murder of four U.S. citizens, including Amb. Chris Stevens. Congress is still pursuing the Benghazi case, despite Administration stonewalling.

For a fuller review of the basis for impeaching Obama, see EIR's May 10, 2013 edition. Acting on impeachment now, may be the crucial means of avoiding World War III.

Edward Spannaus contributed to this article.

nancyspannaus@larouchepub.com

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